http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/columns/s ... 2438&num=0
I've been saying this all off-season, but I really think the Panthers are the team to beat in the NFC South, not us Falcons. I know it's hard for many of my fellow Falcon fans to swallow, but the Panthers showed that they could be a strong team even without 3 of their best players last year (Smith, Davis, and Jenkins). THey are getting most of those pieces back this year. They've improved their 2 weakspots from a year ago: OL and DBs. The main concern is just how durable DeShaun Foster can be as the feature back. He didn't live up to expectations last year, but even if he's not 100%, they showed they can have a functional running game headed by Nick Goings, and now they've added Eric Shelton to the mix.
But Clayton does a good job of breaking down the division. As I think it mentions, it will basically come down to the team that runs the ball the best and stops the run the best which wins the division. The Falcons prided themselves on just those 2 aspects of the game last year, but I think we will need to show better versatility this year if we want similar results.
I think the Saints and Bucs can challenge, but I really think the Falcons and Panthers have the division to lose. I expect both the Bucs and Saints will both be around 7-9 or 8-8 this year, but both teams still have a ways to go. But the Bucs could be the wildcard, basically because of a man they call the Cadillac. If he has a big rookie campaign, then he could potentially springboard a "lacking" Bucs team to the top of the division. But I think it will basically rest on him. If Cadillac is not amazing, then the Bucs will maintain the status quo and hover around .500.